Neurologic symptoms associated with cattle farming in the Agricultural Health Study.
Vegosen-L; Davis-MF; Silbergeld-E; Breysse-PN; Agnew-J; Gray-G; Freeman-LB; Kamel-F
J Occup Environ Med 2012 Oct; 54(10):1253-1258
OBJECTIVE: Infection with Campylobacter jejuni, a bacterium carried by poultry and livestock, is the most frequently identified antecedent to the autoimmune neurologic condition Guillain-Barré Syndrome. We used Agricultural Health Study data to assess whether cattle farming was associated with prevalence of neurologic symptoms. METHODS: Prevalence of self-reported symptoms in cattle farmers (n = 8878) was compared with farmers who did not work with animals (n = 7462), using multivariate regression. RESULTS: Prevalence of numbness and weakness were increased for beef and dairy farmers compared with the reference group (P < 0.0001). Of cattle farmers, 48% did not report raising other animal species, and prevalence of numbness and weakness were also increased in this subgroup compared with the reference group (P < 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: Occupational exposure to cattle was associated with increased prevalence of self-reported symptoms associated with peripheral neuropathy.
Infection-control; Bacteria; Poultry; Livestock; Neurological-system; Neurological-diseases; Neurological-reactions; Agricultural-workers; Workers; Agricultural-industry; Agriculture; Statistical-analysis; Epidemiology
Leora Vegosen, MHS, 615 N Wolfe Street, Room, W7034G, Baltimore, MD 21205
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Johns Hopkins University - Baltimore